March 23, 2023
Programmatic SEO

Testing the Capabilities and Limitations with Programmatic SEO

Floridamarkers is an experimental site to explore the limitations and capabilities of Programmatic SEO practices using public data on a standard WordPress site using an external application called PageFactory.

This Use Case will involve publishing information on over 5000 of Florida’s Historical Markers that can be published on a standard WordPress blog. Each marker will have a unique page.

Programmatic SEO Testing Scenarios

This site,, will test the following:

  • Exhibit the ability to add new posts in mass from publicly available data. – Completed Successfully
  • Ensure posts are indexed in Google and Bing. – In process
  • Exhibit the ability to show and rank for unique keywords in search engines. – In process
  • Exhibit the ability to present useful authoritative content that is unique. – In process
  • Exhibit the ability to update existing posts with updated content and images. – In process, able to update published posts. however using the same featured image over 100s of posts is an issue
  • Exhibit capability to work with Rank Math – Completed Successfully

Implementation Milestones and Challenges

  • Installed Rank Math and edited functions.php in the Theme files to make the post’s title the keyword. Instructions on how to do that can be found at How to Automate the Insertion of Focus Keyword.
  • Since the data has the marker’s latitude and longitude, I could generate a Google Maps URL in Sheets to show a map and streetview each post. This greatly improved the look of the page.
  • Currently, only a single image can be selected when generating pages with PageFactory. That becomes a bit weird looking when hundreds of pages are generated. I’m using a new featured image with each run, but I would like to see if the featured image can be picked up from the spreadsheet.
  • Trying to figure out how to correctly use Jinja to stuff text in cases with no data in the spreadsheet for that variable.
  • Using a small subset of google sheets data is perfect for running tests. Found that the PageFactory will update a post with changes and additions if the title is the same. No duplication of posts.
  • Had to add image with alt tag of the key word in order to score higher in Rank Math
  • Google has indexed 89 of my 575 pages so far.
  • Used smaller set of data in order to properly categorize it. Using an 80 line set of data with markers around Orlando.

What Inspired This Experiment With Programmatic SEO

I regularly listen to a Do You Even Blog podcast hosted by Pete McPherson. In a late November 2022 podcast, he interviewed Allison Seboldt about a topic I had never heard of before called Programmatic SEO. I was intrigued. I offered a way to practically publish posts that may originate from data on a spreadsheet. I was so taken by it that I listened to it twice.

That evening I signed up for and started to work. This site was spun up the next day, and I began experimenting with publishing posts with a small subset of data on a Google Sheet.

What is Progammatic SEO?

The world of search engine optimization has changed drastically over the years. Google’s algorithms constantly change and update, making it incredibly difficult to keep up with the advancements in SEO. Luckily, there’s a solution: programmatic SEO! Programmatic SEO is an automated way of doing things that used to be done manually by marketers. It allows you to create hundreds of thousands (or even millions) of pages while optimizing them and ensuring they adhere to on-page SEO best practices.

Why is Programmatic SEO Important?

Programmatic SEO is important because it can help you scale your SEO efforts. It allows you to create hundreds of thousands of pages more quickly than if you were to do them manually, making it a great option for companies that need to expand their content quickly. Additionally, programmatic SEO can help ensure that the pages created are relevant and useful for your audience.

A Guide To Programmatic SEO

Programmatic SEO aims to rank high in Google’s search results for similarly-structured, long-tail keywords. The process starts with a database that’s preloaded with content and keywords. This database will be used by your website’s CMS (content management system) to create many pages based on the keywords you select or input. You can then use tools like Yoast SEO or SEMRush to optimize these pages, so they’re more likely to rank high in Google’s search results when someone searches for those terms.

Create Dedicated Landing Pages in Bulk with a Page Building Tool

If you’re looking to create a large number of dedicated landing pages (or even split-testing your existing landing pages), a web-building tool can help. Using your collected data in a simple spreadsheet you can create hundreds of pages in a few minutes.

Final Thought on Programmatic SEO

Programmatic SEO is optimizing publishing pages and posts automatically on a website to rank higher in search results. It involves creating a large number of pages that are designed to rank for certain keywords.

Programmatic SEO is much more complex than manual on-page optimization because you’re creating hundreds (or even thousands) of pages at once, and each must be optimized individually. However, the benefit here is that you can create hundreds (or even thousands) of pages while still optimizing them and ensuring they adhere to on-page SEO best practices.

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